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Daughter of the King - born from above in 1989.

Deborah grew up in a military family and moved to Florida in the early 1970's.  She began her journey of creative writing soon after coming to know Jesus as her personal Savior. Her primary goal is to share her personal testimony with others while bringing hope and practical help through her writing.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Deborah - A Portrait of the First Woman Judge (Part 1)

This post is in response to a "request" from a friend.  And, since my BIRTHDAY is in March, I wanted to oblige her.

The name Deborah in Hebrew means “bee”.  What does that have to do with the first woman Judge?  I’m not really sure – but I know what my husband says about me: “You never sit still – you’re always buzzing about like a bumble-bee!”

I was named by my parents in the mid 1950’s when Deborah was a popular name for movie stars and national celebrities.  Only God knew at the time of my conception that I would one day call Him Lord and Savior.  He alone knew the weight and significance of my name.

But – I am writing this post about another Deborah.  The woman I am profiling is found in God’s Word in Judges 4-5.

The book of Judges in the Bible is one of intrigue and adventure.  We read about the deterioration of Israel and her failure to complete the conquest of Canaan after the death of Joshua.  Israel was ruled by Judges who were military and civil leaders during a time of spiritual darkness and rebellion.  Each judge is a savior and a ruler, a spiritual and political deliverer.

We know very little from Scripture about Deborah.  She was known for her wisdom and courage.  She is the only woman in the Old Testament who gained renown according to her own merit and not because of her standing with a man.  Deborah lived sometime around 1150 B.C., nearly 100 years after the Hebrews entered Canaan.

Chapter 4 begins with the children of Israel being “sold” into the hand of Jabin king of Canaan, who brutally oppressed them for twenty years.  What we do know begins in Judges 4:4 which tells us, “Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, was judging Israel at that time.”  A prophet in the Old Testament spoke forth God’s Word which was often preceded by prayer and meditation.

Study notes in the Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) tell us, “Given their patriarchal culture, it is a measure of the poor state to which Israel had been reduced that they were being judged by a woman – a point emphasized in the Hebrew text, which piles up four feminine nouns at the beginning of the sentence [Deborah, a woman, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth].”

"Deborah beneath the Palm Tree"
by James J Tissot
Deborah routinely sat under the Palm Tree of Deborah between Rahah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim where the Israelites would come to her for judgment.  This particular palm tree was most likely named for Rebekah’s nurse Deborah, who was buried nearby (Genesis 35:8).  It is intriguing that in the region of Ephraim, named after the younger son of Joseph who received the blessing from Jacob (Genesis 48:1-22) rich fertile soil, abundant rainfall and fruitful hills defined its territory.  However, it would also become the arena for the Hebrew nation’s humiliation and apostasy before their mighty deliverance from the Canaanites.

Upon receiving her instructions from God, Deborah summoned Barak son of Abinoam and declared to him that indeed God had commanded him to, ‘Go, deploy the troops on Mount Tabor, and take with you 10,000 men from the Naphtalites and Zebulunites.’  He was to confront Jabin’s general, Sisera, who led an army made up of 900 iron chariots.  She would lure Sisera to the River Kishon on the plains below the mountain, and thus Barak’s victory was assured according to God’s plan.  He merely had to obey.
This post will continue next week in  
Deborah - A Portrait of the First Woman Judge (Part 2)

Since I am a "Deborah" - I am celebrating my Birthday during the month of March with a special of only .99 cents for my book MISSION POSSIBLE on Smashwords as an eBook. You can choose from several different formats including ePub, Mobi, .Pdf, etc. compatible with most e-Readers including Kindle and Nook.

You can visit my Smashwords page here:   MISSION POSSIBLE


Deborah is the author of a Christian non-fiction book titled “Mission Possible”. It is written for women who love the Lord Jesus, but their spouse doesn’t share their passion.  It will encourage and challenge the reader to embrace God’s promises for their spouse and future together. 

If you have been encouraged by this post - please take time to share it with others.



  1. Thanks Deborah for writing on Deborah the wise and courageous judge. I look forward to reading part 2 of this post.

    How amusing that your name means bee & that your husband says you buzz around like one:).

    Wishing you a very happy birthday month celebration!!

  2. I appreciate your kind words Dee. You had a great idea and I figured March (my birthday month) was the perfect time to write the post. :)

    And yes - my "name" seems to suit me just fine! Blessings,



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